ALTOONA — Gerrit Cole, the Pittsburgh Pirates' top prospect, has been selected to represent the Pirates organization and play for the U.S. squad in the 2012 SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game.
The game will take place July 8 as part of the All-Star festivities at Kauffman Stadium.
Cole, who made his first start for the Class AA Altoona Curve on Wednesday night, will make the trip with fellow hard-throwing right hander Jameson Taillon. It is the fourth straight season a member of the Curve will partake in the Futures game and with Cole’s selection the Curve have had at least one player selected in all but three seasons since becoming a franchise in 1999.
The first-overall pick in the 2011 draft out of UCLA, Cole set down the first nine men he faced in order on Wednesday night and wound up finishing five innings with two runs allowed and six strikeouts. His outing came on the heels of a promotion from High-A Bradenton where he was 5-1 with a 2.55 ERA.
Cole joins the likes of Starling Marte, Gorkys Hernandez and Bryan Morris, who are the three most recent Curve members to be invited to play in the Futures game.
The 21-year-old will be under the direction of George Brett during the Futures game as the Hall of Famer, who spent his entire 21-year career with the Royals, is slated to manage the U.S. squad for the game. The World squad will be managed by five-time American League All-Star Bernie Williams.